Eve Kushner

Eve Kushner is a writer in Berkeley, California. In addition to placing 315 articles in 35 markets, she has published two books. Both are in their second printings. You can find out all about her and her work at www.evekushner.com.

Eve is now focusing exclusively on kanji, the most complicated script used in Japanese writing. In December 2011 she launched Joy o' Kanji (www.joyokanji.com), a lifelong project. She aims to write one essay about each of the Joyo kanji, the characters used in daily life in Japan. Readers can download these essays in PDF format for an extremely low price. With comprehensive information about every aspect of a character, as well as photos of kanji in real-life uses, these essays reveal the personalities of each kanji (the character of the characters!) as nothing ever has. The site also features photo albums of kanji in action, as well as plenty of free essays (particularly about radicals).

With all of her writing about the Japanese language, Eve has tried to show that kanji can be charming, poetic, and fun, not the source of fear and loathing that people often make these characters out to be.

Although her focus is now monomaniacal, she spent years writing about architecture, books, food, local events, and people with unusual passions. She began her career with "Experiencing Abortion: A Weaving of Women's Words" (Harrington Park Press, now Taylor and Francis, 1997). Because of this book and because of a prominent article she wrote about abortion issues in Hollywood movies, she has been featured in "Newsweek" and on TVO, a Canadian public television program. 


  • “Highly recommended. Kushner details her passion for kanji in an entertaining, humor-laced narrative chock-full of information, examples, and games. Anyone who has suffered through humdrum kanji-learning aids will find welcome relief here. Kanji neophytes, kanji masters, and everyone in between, let Kushner transport you to Kanji Heaven!”
    Mary Sisk Noguchi, Japan Times
  • “Eve Kushner . . . presents excellent learning strategies. . . . It helps to be as crazy about kanji as she is; even one of her dogs is named Kanji. She dreams about kanji and her enthusiasm for the subject is infectious, which helps pull a student along…. Kushner doesn’t shy away from these complexities as do many introductory kanji instruction books. She tackles them head on and provides understandable explanations with good examples.”
    Todd Shimoda, Asian Review of Books
  • “In Crazy for Kanji, Eve Kushner takes kanji’s raw ingredients and serves them up in ways that are delicious, surprising, and so satisfying. She breaks them apart like a garlic clove. She lovingly arranges them into a shish kebab of complex kanji compound meanings. At every step Kushner spins stories of how words’ deep meanings reveal societal attitudes toward emotions, life, work, and women. Kushner serves kanji fresh. I found myself continually returning for more!”
    Michael Rowley, author of Kanji Pict-o-Graphix